Fayez al-Sarraj took over the leadership of the Government of National Accord (GNA), which is based in Tripoli, five years ago.
During those years, he received unlimited support from Turkey. This empowered terrorist militias and helped them spread anarchy across the whole of Libya.
Resignation and concern
Sarraj said on September 16 that he would walk out of the government in October and hand over his authorities to a new prime minister. He also encouraged parties to the Libyan conflict to agree on the formation of a government.
As expected, Turkey was the most concerned about Sarraj’s planned resignation. A day later, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said his country is concerned about Sarraj’s planned resignation.
However, Sarraj’s decision raises questions on whether Turkey knew of it beforehand. The same decision raises questions on the effect this decision will have on the Turkish project in Libya.
Deep under Sarraj’s planned resignation is the drop in his popularity among ordinary Libyans in the areas controlled by the GNA.
Days before Sarraj declared his plan to resign, protests broke out in different parts of the Libyan capital and a number of other cities controlled by the GNA.
Those demonstrating called for Sarraj to leave because of the failure of his government in addressing the needs of ordinary Libyans, the rise in commodity prices and the presence of corruption everywhere inside state institutions.
Sarraj’s planned resignation is also probably driven by the recent emergence of differences between him, on one hand, and his interior minister Fathi Bashagha, known to be Turkey’s closest associate in Libya, on the other.
Bashagha fell afoul of Sarraj against the background of the way the police force dealt with the demonstrations that broke out in Tripoli and the other cities.
Sarraj suspended Bashagha. However, he had to return him to his job after receiving threats from the militias backing the interior minister.